10 days until delinquent properties to be sold

Published 12:35 am Saturday, May 7, 2016

With 10 days left until the annual property tax sale, $85,375.30 in outstanding taxes and advertising fees are still left on the county’s books.

Covington County Revenue Commissioner Chuck Patterson said his office billed $11.4 million in annual property taxes in October 2015 with nearly 29,357 notices sent out.

Taxes were due by Dec. 31.

Friday afternoon, $11,378,136 had been collected, and taxes on 162 parcels remain unpaid.

Additionally, 25 businesses owe $7,518 for business personal property taxes.

Patterson said the sale is set for Tues., May 17, at 10 a.m., upstairs in one of the smaller courtrooms.

“The way this works is we will state the name of the owner,” he said. “We will go A to Z and take bids based on the owed taxes, interest, penalties and advertising costs.”

Patterson said the owner of the properties has the right to redeem the property within three years.

“When they do, they have to pay taxes, interest, penalties and advertising fees,” he said. “Plus they have to pay the interest that has accumulated since the sale.”

Patterson said his office doesn’t want to sell anyone’s property.

“And it’s not because of paperwork,” he said. “Although, there is a lot of paperwork with this process. It’s because of the sentimental value of the property, but it happens.”

Patterson said he urges those who wish to purchase the properties to do their research to make sure there are not other liens on the properties.

“Some of the properties may have weed liens on them,” he said. “That’s where the city has cleaned up the properties. I just say, ‘buyer beware.’ ”

Patterson said if the property doesn’t sell, it goes back to the state of Alabama.

“When the state of Alabama gets ahold of it, it charges more money,” he said. “We don’t want it to go back to the state.”

Patterson said when properties go to the state, the county doesn’t get the property tax collection.

“It’s not good locally,” he said.

Those who haven’t paid, and who wish to pay their taxes can do so, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.